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Friends, colleagues remember local pastor, historian I.C. Holland

Friends, colleagues remember local pastor, historian I.C. Holland

95-year-old was living tie to Civil War

July 9th, 2013 in News

Isham Holland holds the Bible his grandfather, Confederate officer T.C. Holland, read while a prisoner of war following the Battle of Gettysburg during an interview with the Fulton Sun in September. Holland peacefully passed away at 95 in his home July 3, surrounded by friends and family, 150 years after his grandfather was wounded in the Battle of Gettysburg.

Perhaps the last remaining man with living memory of a Civil War veteran, Isham C. Holland passed away in his home July 3.

The 95-year-old former educator, pastor and historian died after he was released from the hospital earlier in the week.

Holland had memories of his grandfather, Confederate Capt. T.C. Holland. Isham died hours after the 150th anniversary of the day his grandfather was wounded during Pickett's Charge at the Battle of Gettysburg. T.C. died when his grandson was 8.

I.C. Holland will be remembered by those who knew him for his "historical knowledge and remarkable memory," according to Kingdom of Callaway Civil War Heritage Chair Martin Northway.

"The thing that was remarkable to me was his mental acuity," Northway said. "There was never any sign of aging in that department for him. I don't think he forgot anything he ever learned."

Holland was born Dec. 9, 1917 in the Coats Prairie area of Reform in the home built by his great-great-grandfather, early Callaway settler William Coats.

"You see, I'm a genuine Callawegian, because my mother's folks came here when it was Louisiana territory," Holland told the Fulton Sun in September 2012. "It'd be her great-grandfather who built the first church here."

Both church and Callaway heritage stayed with Holland throughout his 95 years. He attended Ashland School and Fulton High School growing up, before eventually attending the University of Missouri after working for one of President Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal agencies. During that time he also preached at Church of God (Holiness) in Fulton and married his wife, Carol.

Holland spent the following several decades preaching in Kansas City and serving on mission trips to Bolivia, the Cayman Islands and other far-off locales before returning to Fulton in 1990. He remained involved in the church throughout his retirement, often guest speaking and writing columns and Sunday school lessons for the church newsletter.